a home in progress

There is a reason why this view from the living room loveseat is pictured. It is probably one of the most frequented views (aside from Netflix on the television screen or the gas stove in the kitchen) and in all honesty, its incomplete-ness is an accurate reflection of our whole process of settling in or homemaking. I love a good minimalistic vignette, and for that reason, you won't find me loading corners up with stuff just to fill a void. Six months in, framed photographs and pieces of art are still propped up against walls until I can fully commit to something posted in the same place, or being drilled into the freshly painted, Chelsea Gray plaster.  That off-white lampshade in the dining room drives me nuts and I cannot wait to find the perfect fabric or handmade paper to wrap it in, the map of St. Andrews Old Course is intentionally hung low enough to legibly read every corner of it despite judgment, and the chest is a hand-me-down that I painted nearly a decade ago. Like many of our furnishings I inherited and rebirthed with paint, it gracefully wears scuffs and scrapes from the half-a-dozen moves it has made ever since.  On top of all of these perfect imperfections I would never give up, the stack of mail proves that we're only human, who cares. Completing the aesthetics of this house is a process that I'm not willing to rush, and I'm proud of myself for that, and for many of the other little tasks we've accomplished along the way. More soon.

george

The eyes of this child are so beautiful, but his little personality is even more beautiful! He is such a sweet, fun, joyful little boy and I love to photograph him and see him smile.

short grain

The first time I had Short Grain, I recall telling my husband it was the best food truck food I had ever tasted. Every single detail of the criteria was top notch, a stellar example of food on another level. So it's only fitting that this place has not only been considered the best food truck around, but it's now one of Bon Appetit's best new restaurants----and it's on wheels! 

Their popups at the Daily were always successful events, and their weekly posts like farmers markets or even BenefitFocus on Daniel Island become old faithfuls---trusty opportunities to look forward to. Short Grain, you deserve it all.

a charleston stroll

Walks in this town will never get old, and no matter how long you've lived here, you're bound to stumble upon something new to you every single time.  It's been about 100 degrees each day, but somehow the walks are bearable when the sights are so stellar.

polenta cakes

I LOVE making polenta cakes to switch up the usual evenings that include grits or rice. These couldn't be easier, because dare I admit I bought the tube of polenta from Trader Joes and sliced it into discs in a matter of seconds. From there I pan seared them in a little oil while simultaneously stewing tomatoes and spinach, separately.  I topped it with some crispy bacon pieces and pecorino romano, a balsamic reduction, a smidge of truffle oil, and a basil leaf. It's so yummy with a glass or red wine, I could have it two or three times a week.

12 south in nashville

The trendy, reinitialized and reused 12 South neighborhood on the southeast end of Nashville stole our hearts.  We knew it would based on the brands and restaurants that have taken up residence in this area.  But man even if that fair warning, we were floored by its appeal.

nashville

just got back from a super last minute trip to nashville.  really enjoyed it, and managed to check off every food spot on my [realistic] list.  the ones that fell to phase two will have to wait until another round of tennessee time, and i'll manage to slip in something related to country music while i'm at it...because this trip did NOT include such! Just food. Food.  Food.

some peaches from the ever-so-cool farmstand in the 12 South neighborhood

some peaches from the ever-so-cool farmstand in the 12 South neighborhood

iron rooster ~ annapolis

My first Iron Rooster experience was fabulous- Sunday brunch full of flavor and good service. My more recent carryout experience was brutal. So let's just recommend the full dining experience- on one of their "good" days.  The good day: shrimp and grits with poached eggs, and a homemade berry pop tart.

the [m]organ bench

When we were leaving Texas, we inherited an organ bench that's been passed around in Austin's dad's family for many decades. His parents had it in their house when he was born, and it's been in storage as of late. I was thrilled to take it back to the east coast with me and make it our own. So I did some quick dry brush painting and placed it in a location that we treat as a drop zone---it's the substitute for a foyer. I really love the way it turned out and how it looks under the wall-mounted flatscreen. The [M] organ bench is a functional, sentimental treasure. 

 

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annapolis

A few photos from my time in Annapolis last weekend.  The sun tried to come out, but all in all it was a dreary, gray weekend.  Luckily Annapolis left a colorful impression despite the monochromatic weather.

the H I G H L I N E

Since it opened in 2009, I knew the High Line was going to be a favorite spot for me, but it wasn't until this most recent trip to New York that I fell in love!  I credit the sunset timing, the company, and the WEATHER.  But man, it was perfection. Here are just a few highlights.

sag harbor

Thoroughly enjoyed my time in New York a few weekends back---spent time on Long Island and in Manhattan but the most beautiful of times was probably my day gallivanting around Sag Harbor with a fellow preservationist. It was a gorgeous day and I got to see some exquisite historic fabric. I'll share the pretty bursts of spring below as well as one pretty solid example of adaptive reuse.  

cookbook nook in kitchen


My cookbook nook is the thing my dreams are made of. I'm incredibly tickled that a small space was already placed off the edge of the kitchen, and I immediately knew I wanted it to be an office corner.  Who knew with a little bit of planning, it'd become the perfect spot for all my food books, a marble slab desk, and a computer.  I'm so in love! And it was a matter of minutes before it was completely color coded.

berkeley

Thinking about how incredible Berkeley was-- loved wandering around the campus and streets, eating my heart out at one of the best places in the country, and relishing in the W E A T H E R.  You know, Texas A&M played Cal last year in Regionals, and it got me wondering about west coast baseball and west coast life.  I bet we could manage . . .

sonoma

Thank goodness that no-wine phase is behind me---for a year or two, red wine would [like clockwork] give me a killer headache after just a glass, and wake me up beyond belief at 4am every time.  That torment is behind me, and lucky for me the fun things we learned on our honeymoon and the culture of wine, its country, the fertile lands, etc make me so so happy that I can't get enough knowledge.  For now, I'm just perusing photos from our California trip to get me going, inspired by the idea of conjuring up another trip in the next year or so...

Below are just a few highlights from Sonoma (via iPhone since the camera was long gone by this point...)  I loved the small village/square---reminded me a TON of Oxford, Mississippi, believe it or not. Love the pony being walked like a dog.  Love that there are hundreds of wineries within a 10-minute drive of town, and LOVED our airBNB in Sonoma...the cutest little backhouse that came with a surprise bonus: a sweet garden with produce EVERYWHERE.

plans for france

As the weather warms up here, I can't help but think of summer travels in my past--and the most noteworthy is certainly the times I hopped on a train solo and explored smaller towns in the countryside of France. As Austin and I look ahead to our crazy lives and everything that seems to fly by in a calendar year, I realize it's never too soon to start planning our trip so he can finally see some of Europe.  So to start, I should pull out those photos (thank God they're not all gone forever) and reminisce.